July Recap | Full-Length Novels, BookSprout, Street Teams, and Beta Readering on the Horizon!

Hi, Sparrows!

July has been a whirlwind for me. I have no idea what to open with today, because everything’s kinda a big deal. Let’s do this in no particular order:

Brightened Shadows

While NaNo has been a fail overall, I have written the first few thousand words on the sequel to Darkened Light, and that’s super exciting! I feel like it’s been a long time coming (even though it kinda hasn’t), and it’s been great to be back with these characters.

It’s had to take a little backseat while I work through my editing jobs. July has been extremely kind on that front, but it also means that my own books have to wait. I’ve been focussing on Shadow in Ar’Sanciond, but I’ll get to that in a minute ๐Ÿ™‚

Blood Wisp Trilogy

This is possibly the biggest change I’ve made all month–if you’re following me on Instagram, Facebook, and/or Twitter, you’ll already have seen it:

Originally, the Blood Wisp trilogy was going to be three novellas. One of my critique partners has pointed out that the three read more like one book rather than three individual ones, and she’s right!

So, what’s currently three novellas will become the first full-length novel, and there’ll be two full-length sequels after that. So, there’ll still be three books, but not quite as I planned ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m afraid it’ll take longer because of that (I’m aiming for late 2020 now, so roughly a year later, but no promises–it’s way too early for that!), BUT you’ll also get more Michiko and Aza goodness, so that’ll be worth it ๐Ÿ˜‰

Relics of Ar’Zac

There are a few bits here, so I’ll use sub-headings so you can skip the ones you don’t care about.

Rise of the Sparrows

In case you missed it:

I have a book trailer ๐Ÿ˜‰

BookSprout

Wardens of Archos (Relics #2) is on BookSprout at the moment! There are only 20 copies available for download and review, so if you’d like to review it for free, get it while there are still copies.

My Sparrow Street Team is recruiting!

There are zero obligations, meaning you promote the books you want to promote without worrying about me kicking you off the list when you don’t promote something.

I provide images and links to make it super easy for you.

Take a look at the details and sign up here.

I do have a promotion coming up, but there’s another reason to sign up too:

Blood of the Dragon

This is now with my editor and she shouldn’t be much longer, which means it’s almost time for beta readers.

*totally doesn’t freak out at all*

*breathes into paper bag*

If you’ve read Rise of the Sparrows and Wardens of Archos and want to be a beta reader for the final book in this trilogy, sign up for my Sparrow Street Team and I’ll email you when it’s ready.

Shadow in Ar’Sanciond

This is almost with my editor for its line edit, which means I’ll need beta readers here soon too! You don’t need to have read the other books in the series to beta this one since it’s a prequel novella, so all the more reason to join my Street Team ๐Ÿ˜‰

And that’s it for July! If you have any questions about my Street Team or want to tell me how your July has been, make a tea and leave a comment below <3


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I HAVE A BOOK TRAILER omg *flails*

Well, technically I have two versions of this one, so that’s even MORE exciting?

SO MANY thanks to Becky and James at Platform House Publishing for creating this beauty <3 It feels beyond special to have a trailer for my book, and I’m immensely grateful.

I hope you’ll love it as much as I do. Enjoy <3


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A First Look at BRIGHTENED SHADOWS (DARKENED LIGHT #2)

To celebrate NaNo (because I’m actually always celebrating NaNo), I want to give you a first look into the sequel to Darkened Light today. It’s my Camp NaNo project, so it’s fitting!

I can’t share a whole chapter or anything like that (first draft mess!), but I can share the current opening and some graphics.

Let’s start with its Pinterest board:

Brightened Shadows will be dark with light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel vibes throughout. It’s the darkest thing I’ve plotted so far, and I think its board represents that.

Here are a few things it’ll have:

Pissed-off elven gods.

A growing corruption in the worlds as well as in one character.

Death (think I’m gonna leave that vague ;))

Necromancy

The scenery of Scotland and Norway

Gay love

A not-all-happy ending

SPOILER WARNING: If you haven’t read Darkened Light yet (get it here!) and don’t want a BIG spoiler, don’t read the quote.

To finish, here’s the current opening (in its first draft messy state):

‘Darkness had fallen over Dunha. Naavah Ora looked at the city at the heart of the spiritsโ€™ haven and mourned its lost light.

She mourned the loss of herself too. It had been gradual, slow and invisible like poison, but now it was too late and she feared sheโ€™d never know the difference again. Were these her fears or Ithreanโ€™s? She no longer knew.

Ceallach had corrupted Dunha, and whether she was herself or the goddess of the dead, she would have her revenge.

For no one disturbed the soulsโ€™ peace while she was their guardian (Naavah Ora?), and she (Ithrean?) would burn the darkness out of her creation and return its light to even the darkest corners.’

I hope you enjoyed this first glance at Brightened Shadows! Let me know what you’re most looking forward to in the comments.


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July Goals | Camp NaNo fun!

Happy July, Sparrows!

I always feel energised when it’s warm and bright outside, which is just as well this month! I’m keeping my list short again, partly because it’s a busy month with two birthdays and one graduation but also because the few goals I have set are bigger ones and will take time.

There should be lots of progress ahead!

Brightened Shadows

As of this morning, my NaNo WIP sits at just over 2k ๐Ÿ˜€

I love being back with these characters and can’t wait to share a few first insights, but it’s a little early for that. For now, just know that it’s coming along well and the suffering is about to start ๐Ÿ™‚

I will give you a small look behind the scenes later this month (around the 17th), so keep an eye out for that!

Relics of Ar’Zac

Blood of the Dragon

I’m making the last changes before it goes to my editor. I’m trying the program ProWriting Aid for it and it’s been an interesting experience so far!

Shadow in Ar’Sanciond

As soon as Blood of the Dragon is with my editor, I’ll go over it one last time before it can join it’s older sister on my editor’s laptop.

Once my editor has finished the line edits, I should have tentative release dates for you! I’m still on track for 2019 releases, but I don’t want to jinx it.

And that’s it! Not many goals as you can see, but what I do have will take up my whole month. What will you achieve in July?


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June Recap | Wattpad and NaNo changes

Happy end of June, Sparrows!

This has been such a crazy month–I posted three times since I posted my June goals!–which makes this recap quite exciting!

There’s a summary at the end, so you get all the good bits in one place.

Relics of Ar’Zac

Blood of the Dragon

I’m pleased to say that I finished adding chapters, which means I’ve finished the dreaded rewrites! There were two scenes more (I think) than I thought I’d add, so my word count has come along quite nicely.

It’s currently just over 80k, and I’ll add a few more during my last read-through. Everything needs to wrap up nicely.

Rise of the Sparrows

In case you missed it: the paperback is available again! *throws confetti*

But even more exciting than that, you can now read the prologue and the first six chapters for free on Wattpad!

My plan is to upload the first few chapters of every series starter I have now and will have in the future, so you can see if my books are for you before you buy. I might also post early looks into new WIPs, so it’s worth following me over there if you like those special sneak-peeks.

Darkened Light

I decided on a last-minute change to my Camp NaNo project last week–instead of starting the new Dreamer novella trilogy, I decided to finish the Darkened Light duology!

I announced the title of Book 2 earlier this week, and I’ve spent all week plotting and preparing for NaNo. It’ll be dark, Sparrows. Stock up on chocolate now and you might just have enough by the time it comes out.

My Scrivener index cards are ready. NaNo can come.

Dreamer

What’s going to happen with the Dreamer trilogy, you ask?

I have spent most of June plotting it and getting to know my characters, so when I come back to it (very likely once I’ve set the first draft of Brightened Shadows to proof) I’ll have a good head-start. I introduced Esta earlier this month and have a lot more to show you!

It was starting to feel a little forced and the plot had moved away from my original idea too much, so I think letting it simmer for a little longer is best for myself and the books.

It’ll probably be my NaNoWriMo project in November, so I’ve got time to sort it out.

To summarise…

Rise of the Sparrows is on Wattpad. (Prologue – Chapter 6)

The paperback of Rise of the Sparrows is available again.

I’ll be working on Brightened Shadows (Darkened Light #2) for Camp NaNo.

I introduced Esta Anderson, the MC of my new Dreamer trilogy.

And that about sums it up! What have you achieved this month? Make a tea and tell me about your achievements <3


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Darkened Light #2 TITLE REVEAL

It’s official, friends!! ๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰๐ŸŽ‰

The sequel to DARKENED LIGHT is called BRIGHTENED SHADOWS!!! ๐Ÿ˜

*swoons at own title*

I’ve been sitting on this one for years–I named both books at the same time–so I’m relieved I no longer have to watch what I say where this sequel is concerned ๐Ÿคฃ

I’m making a start on it next month during NaNo (more on that change of plan on Friday) and will continue writing through August and finish it in September. All being well, it’ll be out sometime around autumn/winter 2020, which would go soooo beautifully with the cover–but that’s a reveal for another day ๐Ÿ˜‰

(I haven’t booked the cover yet, so don’t expect it any time soon <3)

What do you think? Do you like it? ๐Ÿ˜


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Meet Esta Anderson (WIP: DREAMER)

Hi, Sparrows!

*waves* I bet you didn’t expect to see me halfway through the month!

I want to share more of my writing progress with you, so I’ve lined up a whole host of things I can show you ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m making a start this month by introducing you to my MC from my Dreamer novella trilogy, Esta Anderson. It’s my project for the July Camp NaNo, so I’ve spent quite a bit of time with Esta lately.

Some things about Esta:

  • Her full name is Estelle Anderson, but she prefers Esta because it has an edge to it and doesn’t sound like a pampered princess.
  • She’s an introvert and prefers a good book and a hot chocolate to a night out.
  • She’s allergic to cats but not dogs. She adopted a rottweiler puppy together with her BFF, Bonnie, when they moved in together, and she has a feline spirit guide in her dreams.
  • She lucid dreams at will. There’s a door in every dream that’s giving her bad vibes–so, naturally, she’s gonna open it. She gets a little (*cough* OMG understatement of the century!!) more than she expected when she does.
  • She doesn’t give a shit about fashion and wears whatever’s comfy.
  • She swears a lot and is sarcastic as fuck.
  • She wants to be an art photographer focussing on surrealism, but that industry is hard, guys. In the meantime, she works part-time in a university art gallery.
  • She can’t lie to save her life.
  • She has misophonia and what we both call Bookworm Syndrome.
  • Her greatest fears include losing Bonnie, dying with regrets, time slipping away from her, no longer knowing the difference between dream and reality, everyone hating her photography, and spiders.
  • She’s not super close to her family and has lost touch with everyone but her parents and her grandma. Her BFF since childhood, Bonnie, and her rottweiler Buffy are her real family.
  • She wants to uncover the world’s hidden secrets. The witch next door (who I haven’t named yet) teaches her sometimes.

That’ll have to be enough for now or you won’t have anything new to learn about her when the books come out ๐Ÿ˜‰

I LOVE character aesthetics, so I’ve done another one besides the one above. It’s a little different:

Character aesthetic: Esta Anderson (WIP: DREAMER, urban paranormal fantasy)
Character aesthetic: Esta Anderson (WIP: DREAMER, urban paranormal fantasy)
Character aesthetic: Esta Anderson (WIP: DREAMER, urban paranormal fantasy)

I mean, what are notebooks for?

Both are early aesthetics, so I might make a new one now I know Esta a lot better. They are still accurate and very her, but they can be even more so. Neither features her dog or her BFF, for one.

While every character I (or indeed every author) write has some parts of me in them, I’ve put more of myself into Esta than any other character. There’s still plenty that’s different too, but I still feel like you’ll meet me when you meet her.

I’m excited I got to introduce her today. I hope the first impression is a good one <3

I’ll post roughly halfway through the month in addition to my monthly goals (first Monday) and my monthly recaps (last Friday), so expect new insights around the 15th.

There’s also a new category to go with these posts. WIP Sneak-Peeks is now live in the category drop-down menu, which I’ve added to the News page.

Is there anything else you’d like to know about Esta? Make a tea and ask away ๐Ÿ™‚


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June Goals | Time to look ahead and PLOT

Happy June, Sparrows!

After an extremely busy first five months of 2019, I’m excited to calm things down a tiny bit. Don’t get me wrong, I’m working on several WIPs at once while also working as a freelance editor, but the pressure of important deadline after important deadline is over.

Rather than rushing to tick things off my to-do list, I can look ahead and plan for future releases. My little plotster heart is happy and excited to bring you new books.

(And refresh my self-care routine. Maker knows that thing needs work.)

I’m hoping to have fewer goals every month from now on but focus more on the ones I do have, so I can take larger steps towards fewer goals rather than baby steps towards lots of goals.

Here’s what I have for May June:

(perhaps stronger tea should be on this list since I apparently don’t know what month it is *ahem*)

Relics of Ar’Zac

(It’s just occurred to me that we won’t be seeing plans for this series for too much longer. I’m on track for publishing both of the below late this year, so after that it’s just the box set of all four books and then that’s it. Won’t that just feel weird? Let’s enjoy it while it lasts.)

Blood of the Dragon

Last week I’ve printed my chapter list (including every chapter’s POV, important events and plot twists, and possible changes and additions) and today, I’ll go over it to see where I can add chapters and expand what I already have.

Thanks to my critique partners’ notes, I have a few ideas and I’ve already added a bit, so just another 10-15k and I’ll be happy with the length.

I’m hoping to finish adding stuff next week. Then I’ll read over it all again (although, part of me is starting to wonder if I only want to do that because I don’t want to let go) and then it’ll be off to my editor.

I’ll be asking for beta readers before you know it ๐Ÿ˜‰

Shadow in Ar’Sanciond

Not much to do here. I’ll read over it again, make it darker where I can, and then it’ll be ready for my editor. One or two more weeks, depending on when I’ll start, should do it.

Get ready, oh my editor.

Dreamer

This is the one I’m by far the most excited about, because it’s still so early that anything could happen.

I love this stage, it’s full of possibilities and magic <3

With Camp NaNo just around the corner, I need to get a move on too, so I have no reason to do anything but plot!

Feels good, Sparrows.

I’ve recently read a book on outlining and it’s given me all the ideas, so I can’t wait to try all these new techniques and make this plot the strongest I’ve written to date.

The Silence of Magic

I wasn’t planning on including this project today–or any time soon, to be honest–but you know what? It’s a massive project with months worth of world building and lore creation, so I might as well get started.

It won’t be a priority, but there’s no harm in doing a little plotting here and there, is there?

Exactly.

So, that’s my June–writing, reading, and lots of plotting. It’s shaping up to be my favourite month (never mind the most creative!) this year so far.

What are your goals for June? Make a tea and tell me all about it.


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